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Review: The Crowne Plaza
AS you approach The Crowne Plaza Hotel's entrance doors you are immediately struck with how modern the building is.
The walkway, with the fountain, leading up to reception, all looks very in keeping with the 21st century and you could be forgiven for mistaking it for a hotel built in the last couple of years.
The interior is spacious and swanky, as you go up to check in.
A large lobby then proceeds into another substantial space, split into a bar and a restaurant, where I ate both dinner and breakfast.
Upstairs, there is a extremely large function room and another bar, where I have been in the past. It is capable of seating hundreds of people and often special events are held there with star guests. Recently, Newsnight host Jeremy Paxman was the man in question, promoting his new book.
To the right of the lobby through some doors the stairs led up to the bedrooms.
I was very pleasantly surprised at how nice my room was as soon as I walked in. The double bed was almost a triple it was so big! And it was very comfortable. The television was enormous. I'm not sure what the screen size was but much bigger than any I have at home.
The bathroom had both a shower and a very good sized bath tub. In fact the latter was a lot more roomy than most hotels have, based on my own experiences and made for a relaxing soak.
The hotel even provides a proper office style desk in the room, with a swivel chair and cable access to the internet. It is clearly catering for business people who have to do some work, maybe check their emails on their laptops whilst staying.
There was plenty of storage space for clothes and a number of comfy seats, meaning it can easily accommodate a couple of guests.
The hotel has a leisure area – called the Quad Club. Aside from a gym, there is a swimming pool, sauna, steam room and two jacuzzis – one indoor and one out.
I tried it out the first evening I was there, having a half hour swim and relaxing afterwards.
The pool was pretty much empty and I was able to swim lengths in the lane, which was quite wide compared to many pools, without ever having to avoid any one swimming past.
Sometimes jacuzzis are a let down because they are not heated properly all day long at some resorts, but these were excellent and very warm. The sauna and steam rooms can fit quite a few people in and are right next to the pool.
The changing rooms were sizeable, with decent lockers and clean.
The morning after I arrived I discovered that the buffet breakfast had everything you could possibly ask for. If you like cooked English, there were eggs, bacon – two varieties in fact – sausages, beans, hash browns and more. There were loads of options for cereal and fruit. You could put sliced bread on an open toaster and there were plenty of bread rolls too.
It was all nicely presented and easy to find what you wanted. A waiter came to my table after I'd selected my food and asked for my drink choice. He swiftly brought me a pot of tea.
Getting to the hotel in the first place was a doddle for me, knowing the area and having been to the hotel for various functions and events before. Some people who are from outside the area may find a little trickier because it is somewhat tucked away.
However, the location can be seen as more of a plus point than a negative. It is incredibly close to the M40 and the A404, with its slip road in fact running parallel to the bypass. As long as you have a good set of instructions and you've checked the map before heading out the last part of the journey, around the Globe Park business estate shouldn't really be an issue.
The major plus points of where it is based are that it has a very large car park and you should therefore never have a problem finding a space. Secondly, it's a quiet spot and despite the proximity to a major road you are completely unaware of that.
It was a really enjoyable stay at The Crowne Plaza.
The staff were efficient and helpful and thankfully there were no queries or issues that had to be resolved with my room anyway.
For anyone looking to visit the area, on a business trip or anyone who needs accommodation, for whatever reason, I'd thoroughly recommend staying here.
I can't imagine anyone finding it anything other than an excellent place to stay.
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